October 4, 2017

By Anne Levin

In two separate incidents that occurred two days apart, two people were struck and killed by Amtrak trains near the Princeton Junction station.

The first, on Thursday afternoon, September 28, involved a Princeton High School sophomore and is believed to have been a suicide. The Crescent train 20 was on its way from New Orleans to New York when it struck the student at about 2:45 p.m., according to an Amtrak spokesman. The second incident took place Saturday evening, September 30, when Amtrak train 92 hit an individual at about 8:30 p.m. more

September 20, 2017

By Donald Gilpin

About 200 professors, colleagues, friends, their families, and other supporters gathered in Princeton University’s East Pyne Courtyard Friday evening to hold a candlelight vigil in support of Xiyue Wang, a graduate student who has been imprisoned in Iran for the past 13 months.

Speakers, who included Wang’s wife, two of his professors, and several of his colleagues and friends, focused mostly on Wang’s qualities as a person, a scholar, a husband, and father to a 4-year-old son. Those closest to Wang, 37, described him as a talented, ambitious, dedicated scholar, full of intellectual curiosity and interest in Iranian culture, a steadfast friend and a loving family man with a distinct flair for cooking.  more

September 13, 2017

By Donald Gilpin

Widespread criticism, along with a barrage of political, legal, and proposed legislative action, has arisen in response to last week’s Trump administration announcement of the end of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program, that protected some 800,000 young undocumented immigrants, also known as DREAMers, from deportation. more

By Anne Levin

With President Trump’s recent announcement ordering the end of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), Princeton’s second annual Welcoming Week could hardly be celebrated at a more appropriate time. Starting this Friday, the town’s Human Services Department is collaborating with Princeton Public Library, the Latin American Legal Defense and Education Fund, The Historical Society of Princeton, and other community partners on this series of events designed to promote contributions made by those who come from other places. more

September 6, 2017

By Donald Gilpin

The Princeton immigrant community, in town and on campus, met with dismay U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s announcement yesterday that President Trump plans to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that shields young undocumented immigrants from deportation. The announcement called for Congress to replace the policy before it fully expires in March 2018. more

August 30, 2017

During the service this past Sunday at Nassau Presbyterian Church, Pastor David A. Davis urged worshippers to contribute funds for victims of the disastrous, record-breaking flooding in Texas. At the Jewish Federation of Princeton Mercer Bucks, an e-blast asking for contributions this week got an immediate response. At SAVE, A Friend to Homeless Animals in Skillman, discussions were ongoing Tuesday about how best to assist the rescue of dogs, cats, and other animals left to fend for themselves in the ongoing storm. more

August 2, 2017

Six candidates have filed to run for three available seats on the Princeton Public School Board in the November election, according to Mercer County Election Supervisor Bonnie Epps at Monday’s filing deadline.

Beth Behrend, Jenny Ludmer, Julie Ramirez, Jessica Deutsch, Michele Tuck-Ponder, and James K. Fields will be vying for the three-year, unpaid positions. There are 10 regular Board members, plus two student representatives. more

July 21, 2017

XIYUE WANG AND FAMILY: Shown here with his wife Hua Qu and their son, Xiyue Wang, a Princeton University graduate student in the history department, was arrested in Iran last summer while doing research for his doctoral dissertation and has been sentenced by Iranian authorities to 10 years in prison for espionage. (Family Photo Via Princeton University)

An Iranian court announced Sunday that it has sentenced Xiyue Wang, a Princeton University graduate student in the history department, to 10 years in prison for spying. A Chinese-born U.S. citizen, Mr. Wang, 37, was arrested last summer in Iran while conducting research on the administrative and cultural history of the late Qajar dynasty for his PhD dissertation. more

June 14, 2017

Tracy K. Smith, the Roger S. Berlind ’52 Princeton University Professor in the Humanities and a professor of creative writing in the Lewis Center for the Arts, has been named the 22nd Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry for 2017-18.

Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden announced the appointment today. Ms. Smith will take up her duties in the fall, opening the Library of Congress’s annual literary season with a reading of her work at the Coolidge Auditorium. more

April 26, 2017

Saturday’s marchers for science, some 2,400 strong, gathered at the Battlefield Monument, led in spirit by Princeton’s most renowned scientist. Participants talk about what brought them there in this week’s Town Talk. (Photo by Emily Reeves)

March 29, 2017

In the Town Topics story titled “Rider Seeks Buyer to Keep Westminster in Princeton” that ran in this week’s issue (March 29), it was indicated that Westminster Choir College would remain in Princeton. This has not yet been determined, as Rider is seeking interest from institutions that may choose to move the choir college to a different location. The Coalition to Save Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey is still seeking support to make certain the college remains at its present location.

February 22, 2017

Members of the Hun School boys’ hockey team celebrate with their student cheering section after Hun edged Princeton High 4-3 in the Mercer County Tournament championship game last Friday evening at the Mercer County Park rink. It marked the fourth straight county crown for the Raiders. See page 34 for more details on Hun’s win. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

Princeton Animal Control Officer Saul Nathan Barson was arrested on February 20 by the Solebury (Pennsylvania) Police Department on charges of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, statutory sexual assault, sexual assault, indecent assault, corruption of minors, and criminal use of a communication facility.

Mr. Barson has been suspended from his job without pay pending further investigation, according to Princeton Municipal Administrator Marc Dashield. more

February 15, 2017

An overflow crowd attending a gubernatorial candidate forum at the Suzanne Patterson Center, held by the Princeton Community Democratic Organization (PCDO) Sunday evening, February 12, officially endorsed Assemblyman John Wisniewski for New Jersey governor in the next election.

After a first round of voting by PCDO members, Mr. Wisniewski and fellow candidate Phil Murphy, a financier and former U.S. ambassador, competed in a run-off. Mr. Wisniewski won with just over 60 percent of the vote, which is the amount required for the PCDO’s endorsement. Also appearing at the forum were State Senator Raymond Lesniak and former Treasury official and federal prosecutor Jim Johnson. more

Ever since a fire leveled the AvalonBay apartment complex in Edgewater two years ago, local residents concerned about safety at the company’s development on Witherspoon Street, which opened last fall but still has sections under construction, have been pushing for upgrades in New Jersey’s building and fire codes. They have stepped up their efforts since February 4, when another blaze destroyed part of an AvalonBay complex under construction in Maplewood.

“There are so many people working to change the codes,” said Princeton resident Alexi Assmus, one of several involved in the effort. “We have been doing an amazing amount of work. There are also citizens in Teaneck and Wayne who are trying to do this. It’s a big effort.”  more

February 8, 2017

A rally “Against the Muslim Ban and Bigotry,” co-sponsored by The Coalition for Peace Action (CFPA), took place on the steps of the Trenton City Hall Monday, as federal courts, which had temporarily banned the administration from enforcing two parts of Mr. Trump’s order, considered the federal government’s appeals against their ruling.

Meanwhile local institutions, groups, and individuals continue to express their concern and to take action to support vulnerable individuals. more

A fire last Saturday that ripped through an AvalonBay Communities apartment complex in Maplewood, under construction and scheduled to open in March, destroyed many of its units. While this is the second major blaze in two years at a property owned by AvalonBay, which opened Avalon Princeton last fall, a company official said the Witherspoon Street development is more than up to code. more

February 1, 2017

There has been an outpouring of support in Princeton — from the University, the Institute for Advanced Study, town government and local groups — for refugees and other immigrants affected by President Donald Trump’s recent executive actions.

GOING OR STAYING: That’s the question on the minds of students at Westminster Choir College, which could be relocated to Lawrenceville if Rider University, which owns the school, decides to put the Princeton campus up for sale. A 24-hour musical performance marathon by Westminster students, faculty and alumni this week was mounted as a protest by those who want the campus to stay where it is. (Photo by Emily Reeves)

Jody Doktor Velloso’s warm, melodious soprano filled the sanctuary of Nassau Presbyterian Church Tuesday afternoon, thrilling those seated in the pews. It was a sparse crowd. But Ms. Velloso’s recital was only the beginning of a 24-hour marathon held by The Coalition to Save Westminster Choir College. It was in protest of a proposal by Rider University, which owns Westminster, to sell the Princeton campus and relocate the music school to Rider’s Lawrenceville location. more

With chaos at airports, in the courts and elsewhere throughout the country amidst controversy over President Donald Trump’s recent immigration restriction orders, Princeton is making plans to protect vulnerable members of the community.

“Recent executive actions on immigration issues are cruel, counterproductive, and contrary to the values we hold dear in Princeton,” Princeton Mayor Liz Lempert and the Town Council wrote in a statement issued Monday night.  more

January 25, 2017

Before a standing-room-only crowd of more than 100 outspoken community members the Municipal Council voted 4-1 on Monday night to approve a resolution urging the State Department of Education to deny Princeton Charter School’s (PCS) recent application to expand.

In responding to a conflict between PCS and Princeton Public Schools (PPS) supporters, who have claimed devastating effects to their budget if the expansion is approved, the Council members discussed the issue at some length and listened to a range of opinions from the public before casting their votes on the resolution.  more

January 18, 2017

Despite impassioned appeals on both sides, along with expressed commitments to work together, Princeton Charter School (PCS) and Princeton Public Schools (PPS) remain entrenched in their opposition over the question of a PCS expansion.

Princeton Charter School’s board voted unanimously last Wednesday to support their application to the State Department of Education for expansion, and Princeton Public Schools continued their efforts to block that move.  more

January 11, 2017

Institute for Advanced Study

Throughout the fall the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) continued to assert its right to proceed with its faculty housing project adjacent to the Princeton Battlefield. Despite ongoing objections from the Princeton Battlefield Society (PBS) and others, site preparation moved forward and construction seemed imminent.  more

January 4, 2017

Mayor Liz Lempert has named nine appointees to Princeton’s new Civil Rights Commission, which is designed to provide informal conflict resolution and mediation. Princeton Council is expected to approve the list at its annual reorganization meeting at 5 p.m. Wednesday, January 4.

Members come from different sectors of the community, including four affiliated with Princeton University. “I’m excited about the launch of this important commission, and I’m especially thrilled with the diversity of residents who have volunteered to serve, and the expertise they bring to the table,” Ms. Lempert wrote in an email on Tuesday. more